In 2004, I was in downtown Manhattan, on the couch in my friends apartment. I held the hand of the fellow Bostonian next to me and I cried.
In 2007, I was wrapped in a franchise fleece blanket, on the ceramic tile floor of the Costa Rican dorm room where I was working for the year and I cried.
In 2013, I was on my couch in Boston, watching my boyfriend jump up and down, while I held the dog and cried.
I get emotional about the Red Sox in general, and things are just heightened when it comes to the World Series—as evidenced above.
While the pattern is apparent, this year was different. I wasn’t just crying when they won. I was pretty much crying the whole season.
Nathan and I were at the first game back in Fenway after the week of April 15th. The video montage played and I cried. It got worse when Team Hoyt, the father-son duo who has been running the marathon since I can remember, came out to throw the first pitch. Before Papi cursed, he pointed to his chest and said, “This doesn’t say Red Sox. It says Boston,” bringing on more tears. And of course, when we won, I bawled.
I don’t claim to be the biggest Red Sox fan in the world, but I am part of the Nation. I have been for many years now. It’s been hard to articulate exactly what made this season so special without harkening back to lots of clichés and oversentimental overtures, but there was a different feeling this year.
Although I sensed resistance from my leftist/non-sports loving friends as I posted an obscene amount of Red Sox-related items on Facebook, they all congratulated me after Game 6. My boyfriend moved from Dallas in March so this was his first season as a Bostonian—and he is the ultimate baseball fan, so it was quite a treat. I was able to go to SEVEN games this season, six of which were wins, including the epic Game 2 of the ALCS with the Papi grand slam and Officer Horgan moment of glory.
But what happened this year was more than a win, it was more than moments of glory and tragedy. It was a city, state, region, “Nation”, declaring unity and love for one another. Every time Shane Victorino got up to bat, I would cry. Because his walk up song, “Three Little Birds”, would be cut off before the last line of the chorus, but the fans would keep singing—and loudly.
“Because every little thing is gonna be allright.”
And it was more than enthusiasm and excitement for the game or for Shane. That sound, reverberating off of the Green Monster and hallowed halls of Fenway, was the sound of a group catharsis. A city soothing itself, affirming its resilience.
So every time I heard it, I would cry, and clasp my chest, and was reminded why this is the best damn city in the world.